Tuesday, April 8, 2014


Alexa Shook, PacificSource
(503) 802-5956,

Justin Yax, DVA Advertising & PR
(541) 389-2411,

Third Annual PacificSource Healthy Life Schools Challenge Returns with Two Kickoff Events on April 14

Friendly competition between Springfield and Bethel School Districts, emphasizing healthy eating and physical activity, expanded for 2014

(SPRINGFIELD, Ore.)—In an effort to raise awareness of healthier eating and increased physical activity among faculty, staff, and students in the Springfield and Bethel school districts, PacificSource Health Plans is once again holding a monthlong Healthy Life Schools Challenge from April 14 through May 10. Now in its third year, the Challenge rewards schools in each district whose faculty and staff replace the greatest number of high calorie snacks each day with servings of fresh fruits and/or vegetables.

The elementary, middle and high schools that consume the highest percentage of fruits and vegetables will each receive a $1,000 donation from PacificSource to be used to support health and wellness efforts within the school. Participants will have a head start toward achieving their goal courtesy of PacificSource, which is providing a stipend to each district to purchase fruits and vegetables during the Challenge.

“Replacing high calorie foods with servings of fresh fruits and vegetables comes down to basic awareness and minimal effort, and the Schools Challenge is a great way to raise awareness by involving staff and having them lead by example,” said Alexa Shook, director of Healthy Life for PacificSource Health Plans.

New this year, faculty and staff will be encouraged to take part in the “Run For My Healthy Life” training program, a four-week training plan specifically designed to help participants prepare to run or walk a 5-kilometer race. Additionally, PacificSource has donated 50 race entry fees to be used by teachers, faculty and staff to compete in the CASA/RE/MAX Integrity Champions for Children race at Skinners Butte on May 10 (all youth 18 and under may participate at no charge if they enter by 4/25). PacificSource has donated another 100 entry fees – 50 for staff and 50 students – to participate in the Miles for Meals 5K on May 26 at Alton Baker Park. 

Back again this year is the Kid’s Health Challenge, an essay contest in which students in grades K-5 will be asked to write about what it means to them to live a healthy life.

Of the nearly 600 teachers, faculty and staff who participated in the 2013 Healthy Life Schools Challenge, some 40,000 servings of fruits and vegetables were consumed, replacing 10,000 unhealthy snacks. Participants also logged 5,393 hours of exercise during last year’s competition.

This year, the Bethel and Springfield school districts will each hold a kick off assembly on Monday, April 14, from 9 to 9:45 am at Bethel’s Cascade Middle School and from 1:45 to 2:14 pm at Springfield’s Centennial Elementary. Former University of Oregon three-sport standout Jordan Kent will be a featured speaker at both events.

“The Bethel and Springfield school districts are committed to providing programs that promote and foster health and wellness among our students, staff, and employees,” said Colt Gill, Superintendent of Bethel School District. “The Healthy Life Schools Challenge is one of our core health initiatives and is a fun way for our employees to take charge of their health and provide a role model of healthy behaviors to our students.”

About PacificSource Healthy Life™:

Through collaboration with individuals, organizations, academic institutions, and other key stakeholders, PacificSource Healthy Life™ facilitates the adoption and maintenance of positive health behaviors in four key areas: physical activity, healthy eating, smoke free living, and stress management. With programs throughout the Pacific Northwest, Healthy Life is a leader with regard to wellness initiatives that improve the health of the people in the communities that PacificSource Health Plans serves. For more information about PacificSource Healthy Life, visit or contact Alexa Shook at

About PacificSource Health Plans:

PacificSource Health Plans is an independent, not-for-profit community health plan serving the Northwest. Founded in 1933, PacificSource is based in Eugene, Oregon, with local offices throughout Oregon and in Idaho and Montana. The PacificSource family of companies employs 700 people, serves more than 300,000 individuals, and has 6,200 employer clients throughout the Northwest. PacificSource Community Health Plans, Inc. is a subsidiary of PacificSource Health Plans and markets Medicare Advantage products under the name PacificSource Medicare. PacificSource Community Solutions, Inc. is a subsidiary of PacificSource Health Plans and provides Medicaid coverage in Oregon through the Oregon Health Plan. For more information visit

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Last updated 4/10/2014